Many individuals who follow the Nutritarian diet write to Dr. Fuhrman about their success. Keep in mind that results vary from person to person. As always, consult your physician if you have a medical history and/or condition that may warrant individual recommendations.

Cindy's Story


Cindy picture

Results may vary.

Cindy lost 54 pounds; wishes her deceased obese grandmother had the opportunity to follow the Nutritarian diet style  

My obese grandmother wrote poems about dieting in the 1970s, poking wry fun at a “satisfying” lunch featuring iceberg lettuce and a few drops of vinegar. She even called her battle with food an addiction. She shuffled around on swollen legs through her sixties and finally died of flu complications in her early seventies. Half of her dozen grandchildren were overweight or obese by middle age. I turn fifty this year and want a different legacy.

Family trauma made me seek comfort in food in my pre-teen years. I dieted to healthier weights in my teens and twenties, but marriage and motherhood packed on the pounds again. After my fourth baby, at age forty, I weighed 288 pounds, almost twice my ideal weight. I pursued the typically futile rounds of popular diets, but would take off only a few pounds before failing. I ate compulsively. I was increasingly limited in my activities, though as one of the “healthy obese” I didn’t have big warning flags about my health. My marriage and my mothering were suffering. I looked in the mirror and saw my grandmother’s body looking back at me. I was miserable.

In 2009 a friend told me about Dr. Fuhrman. She said his program was a challenge, but made her “feel like a million bucks.”  I was initially skeptical, but his website made a lot of sense. Emily Boller’s “Transformation” blog was the real revelation. I saw myself in her before experience and wondered if I could share her after. I read Eat For Health and Eat To Live and started a blog detailing my daily menu and recipes.  I lost eighteen pounds in about three months, definitely felt like a million bucks, and felt new hope.

But then the holidays came and bad weather made it hard to exercise outdoors.  I fell into self-indulgence and left most Nutritarian principles behind.  I halfheartedly joined the Member Center in January 2010, but didn’t really participate, and over the summer I gained back most of those eighteen pounds. By last fall, when I turned 49, I was forced to take a good look at my life again. I knew that Nutritarian eating made me feel great; no swollen ankles, no palpitations, no heartburn, no menstrual problems, no diarrhea, no cravings or shaky hunger.  It also made me prettier. I wanted that back, especially with the big 5-0 approaching. 

So in late October 2010 I jumped back into Nutritarian eating again, but this time with reinforcements. I determined to participate on the Member Forums, and found a local accountability partner. I joined the monthly accountability forum for November and met a great array of cheerleaders, people from their twenties to their seventies helping one another with recipes, tips for packing lunches and surviving potlucks, and celebrations of athletic achievements. They took me right in, and I felt good helping others too My local accountability partner had joined the forums, and she and I made a harrowing pilgrimage in a snowstorm to see the movie Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, featuring Dr. Fuhrman.

I am doing the almost impossible, healthfully moving from extreme obesity to true good health and a peaceful heart without surgery, drugs, or fake foods and fad diets. On the last day of the challenge I weighed 234 pounds (BMI 35.6), 54 pounds below my highest weight (BMI 43.8).  My blood pressure was recently 124/70, and I have a fasting blood glucose of 89, total cholesterol 171, LDL 115, and triglycerides at 91. When I shop for clothes now I’m wearing the smallest women’s sizes and sometimes even misses’ sizes—what a boost!

My husband appreciates my improving figure and says I look younger than others our age, and he’s recently started reading The Pleasure Trap, a book Dr. Fuhrman recommends. My Nutritarian lifestyle is a lot different from my former life. It’s lighthearted, confident, and hopeful. I am a work in progress, with more to learn, especially as I adjust to my changing calorie needs as I get smaller.  Twice recently I broke into a jog on one of my walks—because I can, because I want to!

How I wish my grandmother had the opportunity of a Nutritarian lifestyle! I want to enjoy this new life with my husband as we celebrate our 25th anniversary this summer.  And as the years go by I will share my “secret” with others who want to know how to achieve happy health.

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